Yearly Archives: 2003

Lenten Resistance Continues 28 March 2003

Supporters Invitation

Dear Friends,

Lenten Resistance Continues 28 March

Below is info from a recent press release.  We invite you to join us for this event/action.  Please bring, if you can, a cross or banner/sign with appropriate Christian message. 

In hope and solidarity

Dan and Scott

From the Press Release:

On 28 March, in Central London, two Catholic Christians will use chains to close the access driveway to and from the Ministry of Defence.  We will gather at the Embankment Gardens (between Horseguards Ave and the Embankment tube station) at 11:15 for a short prayer before we walk to the Ministry of Defence.

Tied to the chain will be a banner with the command of Jesus: ‘Love your enemies’.

Even in the best of times this command is difficult to understand and mostly ignored.  But in the worst of times, as during this present war, it is virtually impossible even to hear.

The need to rid the world of weapons of mass destruction is a goal we also seek, in the other countries of the world as well as Iraq, including Britain and the USA.

Instead we hear from the coalition forces threats to use weapons of mass destruction.  Geoff Hoon, the Defence Secretary, on 2 February insisted that Britain was prepared to launch a nuclear strike on Iraq “in the right conditions”.   He has recently also authorised the use of depleted uranium weapons and cluster bombs.

By blockading the Ministry of Defence we hope to disrupt, even if only in some small way, the process whereby such weapons may be used.  We also hope to give pause to the killing process.  The poor of Iraq have suffered the tyranny of Saddam’s regime for too long.  That innocent people have died at his hands is a tragedy.  Equally tragic are the deaths of those who have been and continue to be killed by the coalition forces.   Are we better people because we will kill fewer innocent people than Saddam Hussein?  The killing of the innocent does not advance the cause of peace, as ‘collateral damage’, even if our intentions are ‘better’.  To its victims war is terror. 

Pope John Paul II has said recently: ‘War is a failure of humanity.’  By our blockade we are saying it is never too late to recover from failure, to make amends, to repent, to choose life!


This action is sponsored by Catholic Peace Action and Pax Christi and is part of the Lenten Campaign of Repentance and Resistance, which began on Ash Wednesday.  On that day, 5 March, five Christians risked arrest by marking the Ministry of Defence in Whitehall (the Old War Office) with blessed ash and charcoal in order to resist the nuclear war preparations of this country and to encourage the nation to repent.  Again on 17 March four people did the same.

The two involved in today’s action are:

Dan Martin, 48, charity worker, Catholic, married and father of four, of Wandsworth, London

Scott Albrecht, 41, former School Chaplain, now student of Theology at the Missionary Institute of London, Catholic, married and father of four from St Alban’s.

Pax Christi, St Joseph’s, Watford Way, Hendon, London, NW4 4TY

Ash Wednesday 2003

Press Release

Embargoed 8 am Ash Wednesday 5th March 2003

Christians Say No to Nuclear Terrorism on day when Pope calls for Prayer for Peace
Ash Wednesday, 5th March, marks the 19th year of nonviolent civil disobedience and prayer at the Ministry of Defence in Whitehall to draw attention to the British Governments continued commitment to Nuclear War preparations.

While our Government makes demands on Iraq to rid itself of weapons of mass destruction, our own Defence Secretary has threatened the use of nuclear weapons against Iraq.

During the day people will be mark the building with blessed ash and charcoal with words such as , ‘Repent’ and ‘Choose Life.’ These actions are likely to lead to arrest. Ash Wednesday is chosen as the day when we can link personal need for and expression of repentance with a call to the nation to turn away from the sin of nuclear war preparations.

At the same time there will be a Christian liturgy , beginning Embankement Gardens (between Horseguards Ave and the Embankment tube station) and continuing around the Ministry of Defence Buildings in Horseguards Avenue. The liturgy begins at 3.00 pm

“Our action and prayer are all the more urgent as the world is at the brink of war with Iraq. Pope John Paul II has called the world to offer special prayers for peace this Ash Wednesday. Our prayer is that the British Government will turn away from a defence policy that is reliant on nuclear weapons and live up to its own obligations to disarm “

 Dan Martin, 48,
 Scott Albrecht, 41,
 Angela Broome, 67, East London
 David Partridge,

Excerpts from our leaflet issued on the day.

Nuclear Weapons as Much a Threat Today as Ever

  • During 2002 Geoff Hoon threatened the use nuclear weapons against Iraq if an attack with weapons of mass destruction were launched against British forces deployed in the region.
  • The demands made on Iraq should be matched by the actions of the existing nuclear states – including Britain. It is essential that we abide by our own legal obligations to bring to a conclusion negotiations aimed at the abolition of nuclear weapons.

I die with the conviction, held since 1968 that nuclear weapons are the scourge of the earth; to mine for them, manufacture them, deploy them, use them is a curse against God, the human family and the earth itself”.

Philip Berrigan. R.I.P Peace campaigner and prophet.
5 October 1923 – 6 December 2002, Baltimore, USA